Wondering what that metal object is the Griz Football players stamp into the north end zone during their tunnel run? Wonder no more, as I was curious enough to get to the bottom of it. Some of you may be wondering what the heck I’m talking about, so before we begin, here is a photo of the object in question.

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Now that your curiosity is to the level in which mine was, lets fulfill your desire to know what it’s about. I asked Ty Gregorak (Defensive Coordinator/Linebackers Coach) what was up. After all, he is the one that runs out and grabs this object after the players head back to the sidelines.

Hey Ty, A lot of people are wondering what the “brand” is that the players carry out in the tunnel run, and you later pick up off the north end zone. Care to shed any light? Thanks man!

Ty responded:

Last spring we were thinking of a theme for this season. Coach Cookus and I thought it would be awesome to run out with a giant brander. I thought “ride” for the brand, which is one of the 10 ethics in a couple of books called “Cowboy Ethics” and “Cowboy Values” would be perfect for this team and us being Montana and all. The captains changed it to “Play for the Brand” which is what it is this fall. Play for the brand meaning the M and everything this university, these guys, and this team stands for.

I got with Ryan Tripp, Jordan’s little brother, who is into metals and fabricating and that kind of stuff and he constructed this brander for someone to run out with and place our “brand” on the field before we play. Coach Mick picks someone before every game, just like the American flag, Navy SEAL Flag, skull and cross, and Montana flags. The brander is extremely well made having both a brand and sword influence to it. Ryan put a lot of time and effort into constructing it and then presented it to the team the Thursday before we played Appy State.

That’s great! Sounds like an awesome tradition these guys have started. Play for the Brand, I dig that and I’m sure Griz fans are all united behind it. But my curiosity strung further… why do the players leave it on the field for Ty to come and grab it. Well…

After Jordan branded the field that night (Appalachian State game), no one went to get it, so I did. I’m so superstitious – I won’t let anyone get it now except me.

I’m sure with the excitement of the first game of the year, the lights, the record-breaking crowd cheering for them… grabbing the brand was the last things on their mind. I hope Ty keeps grabbing it as we don’t want to mess with any superstitions now do we. I’ll keep up with mine, and I hope all of you keep up with your superstitions.

What do you think of the “Play for the Brand”? Do you have any superstitions for Griz Football? Tell us in the comments below.

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